|"i removed my hard drives from my computer which runs xp home for a week or so and today i tried re-installing the drives and this is the error they are displaying."|
Assuming there's nothing wrong with the drives and they are both being detected by the bios....
Only one partition on one hard drive at a time on a computer can be a bootable partition.
If one hard drive has a bootable partition, the other one does not, if you connected the drives to the computer differently than you had them connected before, the bios was probably detecting the drive with no bootable partition first.
If the first hard drive the bios tries to boot from does not have a bootable partition, you get the Operating system not found or similar error, and the bios will NOT try to boot from anything else after that.
All you need to do to fix that is to go into the bios and either
- find the list of hard drives - that's often near the Boot Order or similar settings - the drive model you want to boot from must be listed first, Save bios settings
- less commonly, there may be no list of hard drives but there is more than one hard drive listed in the Boot Order or similar list - the drive you want to boot from must be listed first, Save bios settings. If the drives are not listed there by their model number, they're listed generically, according to the order in which they're being detected by the bios according to how they are connected to the mboard headers, and if they're IDE, how they're jumpered on the back of the drive - e.g. HDD0, HDD1, etc.
"The bigger problem is that even when i remove both the hard drives and try to enter set-up to change the boot order,it wont let me but keeps on dispalying the message. "
That error won't prevent you from getting into the bios, although you MAY need to press the key to get into the bios before you get the error.
You will get the same error message when there is nothing detected while booting as having a bootable partition - of course, you'll get that message when there are no hard drives connected, there is no bootable CD or DVD in a drive.
"now i ran fdisk but i keep on getting a error msg- illegal partition table drive 00 sector 0..after partition n restarting the system will not read my partitions."
Assume there's nothing wrong with the drives and see the above info !
If the drives have NTFS partitions, you DO NOT use Fdisk - that's only for examining or making FAT or FAT32 partitions !
XP makes NTFS partitions for ALL partitions on hard drives than are larger than exactly 32.0gb !
If a partition is exactly 32.0gb or smaller, it shows the NTFS choice by default, but you can choose FAT32 too.
Fdisk cannot "see" NTFS partitions !
2000 and up DO NOT have Fdisk !
They have a program that software partitions like Fdisk does and Formats the software partitioning in one step, the software partitioning starting a little before the formatting. They also have a separate Format program you can use if the partition has already been software partitioned, but they have no equivalent to Fdisk.
In ME and previous Fdisk and Format are always used separately. When the drive, or a partition on it, is blank (un-allocated) you run Fdisk first, then Format.